Oceanography, DNA, and #AmWatching

I mentioned a couple months ago that I’d gotten tickets to see Dr. Robert Ballard, the oceanographer responsible for discovering the Titanic and many other shipwrecks. Hubby and I attended the event last week, and I’d promised to tell you guys about it. First off, Dr. Ballard has a wonderful sense of humor and had the audience laughing several times. He told how he’d gotten interested in ocean exploration and how it factored into his military career. He considers his dyslexia an advantage because his mind works differently from most people and gave examples of how his thought process aided him in discovering shipwrecks. He showed pictures of sea creatures that looked as if the mother ship had brought them from another planet. Something I found fascinating was more than eighty percent of our ocean is unmapped, unobserved, and unexplored. Just think about that. It was an interesting evening well spent. Check out the Ocean Exploration Trust and Nautilus Exploration website to see livestreams of seafloor mapping HERE.

About five years ago, Son #2 and I took advantage of a free thirty day trial membership to Ancestry.com. During that month we traced part of our family back to the 1400s. It’s amazing the records and pictures that are accessible on that website. Not too long ago, he mentioned he’d also like to try out their DNA tests for ethnicity and genealogy. When they were half price over Labor Day weekend, I took advantage of the sale and bought each of us one. I mailed them out today, and it takes 4-6 weeks to receive the results. With what we discovered in tracing the family tree, I’m pretty sure what the results will be, but there could also be some surprises. I’ll keep you updated.

I finished The Sandman on Netflix over the weekend, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed for a second season. Given my track record with shows, the odds aren’t good. I finally started House of the Dragon last night. After two episodes I’m engaged, but not completely sold yet.

Hope you have a fabulous week!

42 thoughts on “Oceanography, DNA, and #AmWatching

  1. Being underwater in the ocean is like being on another planet, Teri. I love the idea that so much of it is unexplored. It sounds like you had a great evening. Can’t wait to hear your ancestry results. DNA results are different from genealogy, so you may get some surprises. My brother and I had vastly different results. It’s all about the biological way the genes are distributed. You get half from each parent, and the half you get may be vastly different from the half a sibling gets. So your ancestry may point to Spain, for example, but your DNA might be 70% German. It’s fascinating. And I enjoyed both The Sandman and House of the Dragon (so far). Looking forward to more of both. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve been snorkeling several times, but when I tried taking the scuba classes, I was too claustrophobic. Anything with the ocean fascinates me, Diana, and Dr. Ballard educated me on so many things I wasn’t aware of. We’re excited to see the DNA results, but I’m guessing it will be a couple months before we hear anything. High school biology class hooked me with genetics, so I’m anxious to see the differences in our results.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I did know we’d barely scratched the surface of ocean exploration. The talk you attended sounds fascinating.

    Can’t wait to hear how your DNA tests shake out. I was surprised with a few things on mine. I’d like to try another to see how reliable they are.

    I thought the bonus episodes of The Sandman were BIZARRE. Well, the cartoon one, anyway. I think you were more into this series than I was. (That gives the series hope for renewal.) I just caught up with Evil on Paramount+. I’m really looking forward to the fourth season. Things are FINALLY being revealed to the cast as well as the viewers.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I am fascinated by people like Dr. Ballard who take the unbeaten path in life. And look what he has discovered by doing so! Thanks for sharing. I can only imagine what all is beneath the ocean (the City of Atlantis for one). I tried to watch the first episode of The House of Dragons and my mindset wasn’t right for it. Too much to try and remember. Have a great week!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. He showed some pictures of well-preserved things in the Black Sea where the salinity is lower than in other oceans. Hard to believe they were hundreds of years old! I’ve watched the first three episodes of The House of Dragons now, and I’m pretty hooked. You trot out a dragon, and I’m usually on board, lol.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Right? We had a headstart on my maternal grandfather’s side – someone had put together an extensive family tree and we had a book of it. That made it so much easier to trace. We also got pretty far with my dad’s side – at least a few hundred years. We saw pictures from hubby’s side of the family from the early twenties, and it’s amazing how much the Polens still resemble them from that long ago.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Imagine being the scientist who discovered the Titanic! I bet Dr. Ballard’s face hurt for a week from his smiles after that, lol.
    Mom did a bunch of research on our family tree but through the Mormon church instead of Ancestry.com. They have a huge archive (the largest in the world, I think?) and she managed to trace our lines back a long way. It’s interesting to see where we came from 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I thought about how he must have felt when they confirmed it was the Titanic – I can’t imagine. I remember reading somewhere that the Mormon church had a large archive, but now I can’t remember where. We had such a fun time tracing it back all those years.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. That talk sounds so interesting! The fact that so much of the ocean is unexplored actually has my imagination going into overdrive 😂. We’ve done the DNA tests. I mostly got it for my husband because his mother was adopted and he wondered about her biological family (even though she has never been). I was able to take one side of my family back to 1500s America (colonial times) for sure and some back to the UK. I’m almost completely Irish, Scottish, and English. And, I’m on the fence about House of Dragon. The latest episode definitely had me doing the one eyebrow raise.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My imagination kicked into gear over that one also, Tessa. Makes you wonder what might be out there. That’s wonderful you were able to trace back so far. Most of ours were English from what I can remember. I’ll be interested to see what comes back. I’m only three episodes into House of the Dragon, but one part was kind of …disturbing?

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Victoria Zigler

    That talk sounds like it would have been fascinating. And it’s going to be interesting to hear about your DNA results. Hopefully how far back you’ve traced your family tree already means there won’t be too many surprises when the results are in.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. From what we traced back, we most definitely came from your side of the pond, Tori – no surprise there. Son #2 is hoping Scotland pops up somewhere. My dad is pretty sure France is in the mix, too.


  7. So cool about seeing Dr. Ballard. I used to be into genealogy – one of my cousins has traced our family back several generations. I’ve thought about another Ancestry membership, but I’m not sure if it would be a time sucker that would distract me from writing. Anyway, I’d love to do the DNA test. Maybe I’ll join long enough to do that.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.